Pinkerton Fellowship Initiative

Preparing the next generation of Youth Justice Leaders,
Building the Capacity of Community-Based Organizations

The Pinkerton Fellowship Initiative (PFI) offers John Jay students the opportunity to gain hands-on experience with leading NYC-based nonprofit organizations committed to youth justice, while also engaging in complementary scholarship to contextualize their experiences. A collaboration between the John Jay College of Criminal Justice and the Pinkerton Foundation, the fellowships are administered by the Prisoner Reentry Institute and open to John Jay students dedicated to serving the New York City youth justice community. Pinkerton Fellows emerge from the program equipped to assume positions of leadership in the field.

Please note: The application deadline for the 2020-21 Pinkerton Fellowship has passed. If you are interested in applying for the Pinkerton Fellowship in 2021-22, the application will be available in December of 2021.


The Pinkerton Undergraduate Fellowship is a 15 month program combining service and scholarship for John Jay College undergraduate students interested in careers in youth justice and direct service. Students are selected based on their academic achievements, professional experience, and commitment to youth justice. Fellows receive a stipend of up to $12,750 for their 15-month commitment. Cohorts begin each June.

Community-based service placements
Fellows complete intensive 12 to 15-month internships at community-based organizations that focus on youth justice. Fellows work full-time (35 hours per week) at their host sites during their summers and John Jay’s January break and part-time (14 hours per week) during their fall and spring semesters.

Academic coursework
As a complement to Fellows’ experiences in the field, Pinkerton Fellows also take a 12-credit upper level undergraduate course in sociology [UGR390] taught by top John Jay faculty and prominent leaders in the New York community.

The practicum exposes Fellows to various aspects of youth justice, including needs and interventions for the justice-involved youth population and the policy context for youth-oriented direct service programs.

Professional development
PRI hosts yearly Youth Justice Symposia as well as workshops and trainings designed to enrich fellows’ learning as well as enhance the field of youth justice as a whole.


  • Stipend of up to $12,750
  • Monthly metro cards
  • An opportunity grant up to $1000

Eligibility Criteria:       

  • Fellows should be a John Jay sophomore or junior at the time of application.
  • Demonstrated interest in youth justice and direct service.

Click here to meet the past and current Pinkerton Fellows